Ryan Gannon

rgannon1@bryant.edu

Hey, I’m Ryan Gannon and I’m a freshman from Litchfield, Connecticut. My plan is to major in accounting with a minor in environmental science. Outside of schoolwork, I run for Bryant’s cross country and track teams. I love watching hockey, and I’m also passionate about helping us move our planet towards a more sustainable future.

Lessons Learned from Freshman Year

May 9th, 2014

As my first year at Bryant comes to a close, I've found myself reflecting on all the exciting things I've done, the new experiences I've had, and the amazing people I've met. I can say without a doubt that it's been one of the best years of my life, and I couldn't be happier to have chosen Bryant. But there are also some things I could have done differently, or that I wish I had known beforehand. Looking back, here are the lessons I've learned from my freshman year at Bryant University:

  1. Appreciate good weather when you have it. Frankly, the winter can really drag on. After a month of the cold and snow, I found myself wishing I had been more appreciative of the nice weather at the beginning of the year. Be grateful for it when it's there, and take advantage of it to spend time outside and enjoy the beauty of the campus.
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  3. Take some trips off campus. Despite the breathtaking beauty of Bryant's campus, a change of scenery never hurts. Sometimes it's good to take a trip somewhere, if only to break the monotony of doing schoolwork. Everyone (including freshmen) is allowed to have a car on campus, so it usually isn't hard to get a ride - and if not, you can always take advantage of the free RIPTA bus system. This past weekend my friends and I spent a day in Newport doing the cliff walk and looking at the historic mansions, and it was a great way for us all to unwind and get our minds off finals for a while.
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  5. Befriend your neighbors. Get to know the people that live on your floor. I've been living near the same people for a whole year, but I'm just now getting to know them and realize what awesome people they are. Leave your door open, and make an effort to find something in common with everyone you talk to... You live on the same floor, that's a start. If you don't do this, you'll find yourself regretting it by the end of the year. Trust me on this one.
  6. Bring a suit. With all the opportunities, you'll need it.
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  8. Freshman year will be a learning experience. No matter who you are or how prepared you are, you will be faced with challenges and intimidating new experiences. You may have trouble adjusting to the academics or living with a roommate, or it might just be the first time you've had to do your own laundry. The bottom line is that everyone has to adjust, so no matter what you are going through just remember that you're surrounded by hundreds of kids going through the same thing, and a few thousand that went through it before you. The Bryant community and all its resources will be there to get you through it, and before you know it you'll be well adjusted to life as a Bulldog.
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Freshman year flies by. And from what I hear, every year goes by quicker than the last. So above all, make sure you enjoy it.

Best of luck.

Thanks for reading,

Ryan

Housing Selection

May 2nd, 2014

One of the most exciting parts of the past few weeks has been selecting where my friends and I will live next year. As a freshman, you live in one of three freshman halls, two of which are traditional dormitories where you will typically live with one roommate, or you may select to be in a quad. These halls have two bathrooms shared by the floor. The third freshman hall offers suite-style living, where several double bedrooms are connected to a common room and a bathroom for that suite alone is included.

My favorite feature of the freshman halls is that each of them has a common room for the entire hall with a couches, tables, a TV and ping pong tables. These are great places to socialize, get some work done and meet new people in your hall.

Just about every sophomore and junior goes on to live in the suite village, before moving on to a townhouse senior year. The suites in the village typically consist of three double bedrooms connected to a common room and a bathroom.

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You get to select where you live, and while preference is given based on credits and seniority, I have yet to meet someone who wasn't pleased with their new home.

Part of why I selected Bryant is that a huge majority of the student body lives on campus, a  fact that really speaks to the school's tight-knit community atmosphere.

Thanks for reading,

Ryan

Surviving Finals

April 28th, 2014

As a second semester freshman, I've already gone through the gauntlet of finals week once. I made some mistakes, but I learned a lot from them and know what to expect for the finals to come. Here are the lessons I learned and the tips I feel are most important:

  1. Invest in a monthly calendar. Use it to mark down when you have your finals as well as important due dates. I didn't do this last semester,  and led to me doing a lot of last minute work. Having all your due dates laid out in one place helps keep you on track. calendar.png
  2. Sleep! Many students pull all-nighters or stay up really late studying, only to be too groggy or tired to focus during the actual exam. Manage your time right, and a good night's rest trumps last minute studying every time. study.jpg
  3. Get outside or hit the gym. This is especially important during first semester finals, when it's cold out and people spend most of their time cooped up inside. I know if I hadn't been running during finals week I would never have been able to focus. Speaking from experience, exercise clears your mind and will make you feel far more productive.

Good luck!

Thanks for reading,

Ryan

Spring Concert Hype

April 21st, 2014

Bryant is gearing up for Spring Weekend, a two-day celebration that will take over the campus two weekends from now. The festivities will include several sessions of field events, a special international meal in the dining hall, and Big Bingo.

The crown jewel of Spring Weekend, however, is the concert. On Saturday night of next weekend, B.oB. will be performing on campus.

To give you an idea of how excited the student body is for this event, here's a look at the line for tickets when sales opened on Monday:

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That line goes around the building and finishes upstairs in the Fisher Student Center. The line nearly doubled in size after I took this picture as well.

Certainly worth the wait, especially considering the tickets are free!

Thanks for reading,

Ryan

Campus Dining

April 14th, 2014

Bryant offers a number of great meal plan options which can be a bit difficult to decipher if you're not familiar with the system. This post will give a quick rundown of the choices and the characteristics of campus dining.

First off, the places to eat:

  • Salmanson Dining Hall ("Salmo") - At Salmo, students are offered a buffet-style dining experience with a great variety of options. The Classics section serves typical main course meals, such as eggs and pancakes for breakfast or chicken and potatoes for dinner. Also popular is the omelette bar in the morning and the International section for dinner, which is best-known for its stir fry. Options such as the sandwich bar, salad bar, cereal, bagels and toast are always available as well.
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  • Cafes - There are two cafes on campus, one in the library and one in the Koffler Rotunda of the Unistructure (which houses the majority of Bryant's classrooms). These are great places to stop by for a quick snack between  classes or during a study break.
  • Fisher Student Center - The newly renovated student center is host to a number of great options. Here you will find a Dunkin' Donuts, a Subway, and Nick's Place, which serves great restaurant-style foods like burgers, salads and chicken tenders. Also located in Fisher is The Scoop, which is essentially an the on-campus grocery store. Fisher is a great place to come for a meal if you're looking to socialize or watch a game as you eat.
fisher.jpg There are a number of different meal plan options, but it essentially works like this: Students are given the choice of seven, 10, 14 or 21 meal swipes per week. The fewer meal swipes they have per week, the more Dining Dollars and Bulldog Bucks they are provided with so that they may eat more often in other places. Below is a rundown of how each works:
  • Meal Swipes - These are used to gain access Salmason Dining Hall, and reset each week. Salmo is buffet-style, so once you swipe in you can eat as much or as little as you like.
  • Dining Dollars - These can be used at the two cafes and at Nick's Place, as these locations are operated by Bryant's dining service.
  • Bulldog Bucks - Good for Subway and Dunkin' Donuts, and can also be used for vending machines and laundry.

Bryant University's dining services are currently provided by Sodexo, but starting next academic year we will be transitioning to a new provider, Aramark. It will be interesting to see what exciting new features this company will have to offer.

Thanks for reading,

Ryan

Lore of the Archway

April 3rd, 2014

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Bryant Lacrosse

March 28th, 2014

There's been a lot of buzz surrounding Bryant's Men's Lacrosse team lately. Currently with a record of 7-2 and a five game win streak, the Bulldogs have been dominant on the field. Already this season, they have been ranked as well as 12th in the nation.

The fast-paced sport of lacrosse is one of the most exciting sports to watch and a favorite of many students on campus.  To have a nationally ranked team at such a small school is something special, and makes for an amazing atmosphere of school pride and spirit.

 If you're planning to visit campus, I recommend you take a look at the team's schedule, and see if you can catch a game while you're here.

Thanks for reading,

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Tour the Beautiful Bryant Library!

March 14th, 2014

The Bryant Library is the go-to spot for most students to study and get their work done. It provides a focused and comfortable environment, and is one of the most beautiful facilities on campus.

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The second story of the library is a sort of mezzanine overlooking the first.

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Both floors of the library are flanked by display cases. The library staff does an incredible job of curating the collections, which are usually made up of a fascinating array of multi-cultural artifacts.

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Attached to the library is the Bello Grand Hall, which is used to host many presentations and esteemed speakers.

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One of my favorite parts of the building is this vertical stock ticker that runs down both floors.

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The cafe is a great place to recharge during study breaks. Their chocolate chip muffins are my weakness.

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Fellow blogger John Logan  working hard as always.

 Note: These pictures were taken on the last day before spring break, which explains the emptiness in the library.

Thanks for reading,

Ryan

Career Fair

March 7th, 2014

On Wednesday, Bryant held it's second career fair of the academic year. I attended the fair last semester and it was a learning experience, so I went into this one with a better idea of what to expect.

Employers come from all over the area to recruit Bryant students for internships and full-time positions. While the top draw is of course business, there are employers from other disciplines as well.

As a freshman, I went in knowing I was unlikely to get an internship so early in my education. But it never hurts to get an early start so you know what to do when it counts. I got a lot out of it anyway, just from talking to recruiters to learn about their companies. I even spoke to one organization, Schneider Electric, that gave me a better idea of which major I want to pursue here at Bryant.

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The career fair is one of the most indispensable tools available to Bryant students. These are some of the best places to work for around the world, and they come seeking Bryant students. All you need to do is put yourself out there.

Thanks for reading,

Ryan

NCAA 6th Fan

February 21st, 2014

Currently ongoing is the NCAA's 6th Fan competition. During 6th Fan, students vote for their respective Division I schools as a way of showing school spirit and supporting their athletic teams. Voting takes place for all of the DI schools nationwide, and success in the competition is rewarded with cash prizes to the school.

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After the first round of the tournament, Bryant proceeded easily into the Sweet Sixteen. This says a great deal about the school pride of Bryant students, especially considering the relatively small size of the student body. Whether its support in 6th Fan voting or in the fan section at a game, Bryant's school spirit always shows.

We are now vying for a position in the Elite Eight! If you'd like to support Bryant, feel free to vote using the link below, or tweet using #6thfan #BRYANT.

http://6thfan.ncaa.com/

Thanks for Reading,

 Ryan